Monday, 27 April 2015

Buck, Pearl S. "The First Wife and Other Stories"

Buck, Pearl S. "The First Wife and Other Stories" - 1933

Some wonderfully described stories about Chinese life up until the beginning of the 20th century. The author talks about the clash between the traditional Chinese and the Western way, something she must have experienced herself as the daughter of a US missionary in China. The title story talks about a guy who goes abroad and doesn't really relate to his coutry wife anymore so that he divorces her and takes a new one, something that would not have happened before.

But there are also other subjects in the various other stories, some talk about the revolution and what was going on at that time, the devastations after a great flood, daily life in China at the time.

This is a great book to see what changes in tradition and life can do to people. Not just in China. If I compare my chidlren's life with that of my grandparents, there is a huge difference and I don't think my grandparents would have understood any of it. Pearl S. Buck saw this when living in China, she saw how people struggled with the newness of everything adn how a lot of them couldn't cope with it.

A nice collection of stories.

Contents:
Old and new:
  • The first wife
  • The old mother
  • The frill
  • The quarrel
  • Repatriated
  • The rainy day
Revolution:
  • Wang Lung
  • The communist
  • Father Andrea
  • The new road
Flood
  • Barren spring
  • The refugees
  • Fathers and mothers
  • The good river 

Pearl S. Buck received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1938 "for her rich and truly epic descriptions of peasant life in China and for her biographical masterpieces" and the Pulitzer Prize for "The Good Earth" in 1932.

I contribute to this page: Read the Nobels and you can find all my blogs about Nobel Prize winning authors and their books here.

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